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Politics Extra
Enquirer reporters give the scoop on what your politicians are doing


Jessica Brown,
Hamilton County reporter


Jon Craig,
Enquirer statehouse bureau


Jane Prendergast,
Cincinnati City Hall reporter


Malia Rulon,
Enquirer Washington bureau


Carl Weiser,
Blog editor


Howard Wilkinson,
politics reporter

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Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Freedom Center wants to switch sides

Jessica Brown reports in Thursday's Enquirer:

The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center wants to turn its back on the Banks – sort of.

Doubtful that the project will get done, the non-profit organization is seeking $1.4 million in state capital money to reconfigure its first floor to put a main entrance on the north side of the building facing downtown.

Read the full story here


88 Comments:

at 8:42 PM, February 13, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Listen to that giant sucking sound!

 
at 9:58 PM, February 13, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can we shut that place down already?

 
at 10:25 PM, February 13, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

OMFG!

OMFG!

OMFG!

The "Freedom" Center is a freaking money pit!!!!!

How blind is this city, this county and this state to see that?

It's an awful, ugly contraption obscuring the view of the river.

Please destroy it before it costs us more money - it will immediately start saving us all money!

Then we can put that land to GOOD use.

If you want a Freedom museum - put it near other museums where you get MUSEUM foot traffic, not sports fan foot traffic.

INCREDIBLE! Who made the decisions about the location of the freedom museum? Captains of industry? politicians? Liberals?

Whoever put it there should all be fired.

 
at 10:31 PM, February 13, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

That is soooooo ridiculous.

Back when this thing was being built, folks like JIm Tarbell said the desig nwas horrible but they weren't listen to in order to appease the politically correct Indianapolis architects chosen for the project. Now, we get this.

Screw it, let's just turn the building into condos.

 
at 10:46 PM, February 13, 2008 Blogger Lisa said...

MORE MONEY!!!!! NO WAY!!!!!!

 
at 11:05 PM, February 13, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Better yet, empty the building and put in slot machines. A true "Freedom Center" should honor ALL people who came here for freedom. Politically correct has gone from irritating to now costly

 
at 11:20 PM, February 13, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

John F. Pepper, Where are you, sir? This whole mess is your personal baby. STEP UP.

 
at 11:23 PM, February 13, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

They should just call Downtown's newest State Representative Bob "I Owe Every Job I've Ever Had to the Republican Party" Mecklenborg and see if he can attach it to one of his inane and meaningless bills.

 
at 12:46 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

"OMFG"
Your hypocrisy and low moral values are apparent as well as your ignorance - no wonder you can't see the value in a museum about America's struggle for freedom.

The museum makes a good argument for opening their backdoor (which also explains the lack luster attendance rates), however, until there IS foot traffic that comes with the building of the Banks Project - there is no need for another entrance.

Whoever is doing PR for the Museum, no matter how well intentioned, sucks.

As far as spending money on this particular Museum - I think it deserves all the support it can get. We have funded every museum and many private for-profit companies, every major event in history has a memorial to its significance - freedom, freedom for its own sake is pivotal and deserving.

 
at 3:11 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

It was stated very publicly before this piece of garbage was foisted upon the public that once built, this place would pay its own way from there on out. Well, it got built and this is the "there on out" part, so they can pay their own way and keep their hands off our tax money that has far better and more appropriate uses then this new entrance that is desired by the administration of the Freedom Center.

 
at 6:15 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Telling is Tyro Yates' comment that the money is for the new front door "and other desperately needed improvements."

Was it really that poorly done the first time?

Take the money from John Pepper: his adopted son and David's BFF Greg Landsmann can Direct this Special Project.

 
at 6:32 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's hear it for Cincinnati City Planners! Great Job Guys!

 
at 7:53 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

My guess is that it probably would cost $10,000 to truly change the entrance. The rest of the 1.4 million goes to cover their debt.

 
at 8:28 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

These people are total idiots. If you pull up in front of the place, they give you directions to the parking garage right below it that takes 13 turns and 2.3 miles from the Bengals to the Reds statiums and down by the river, all to get into the garage. And when you get in there's nothing there but the slave pen and a small picture gallery.

 
at 8:33 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is sad that their main entrance faces a mud pit. Obly in Cincinnati.

But hey, voters in Cincinnati keep electing the same Council, so I guess we bring the incompetence onto ourselves. In NKY and across the country, riverfronts are being redeveloped. In Cincinnati, the riverfront remains an under-utilized mud pit.

 
at 9:04 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

How is this the city's fault or problem?
The Freedom Center needs to get it's act together.

 
at 9:26 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree witht he comments that this place should be shut down. I also agree withthe comments that it is very poorly situated.

I do not favor shutting this center down until a new, and more appropriate, location is found. The concept of the Freedom Center is a good one.

I would suggest putting it near Union Terminal. It would be more likely to generate the necessary funds to be self-sustaining. The two museums would enjoy synergy from each other and help buld commerce on a side of town that needs it.

The Freedom Center really has the potential to be a positive thing in this country, but not withthe people currently running it, and not in its current location.

Do not close this center until a new place is found.

 
at 9:31 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a mess, and how is it that America has become the "Blame Game" capital of the world. The Banks Project is having every bit the trouble getting funded and properly planned as the Freedom Center itself did. But, there is one difference, THE FREEDOM CENTER IS HERE AND THE BANKS ISN'T! Everyone should be behind it and it's needs as its leaders see them. And if the banks gets going then lets embrace it and make a success of the ENTIRE riverfront, which includes the EXISTING FREEDM CENTER. MR

 
at 9:44 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think they're going to have to chalk this up to a loss. Either they can't market the center, or it's just not something people want to go to. It was a nice idea, but they have to come to grips with the facts that it's just not popular.

The building is a bit monolithic, but is a nice piece of architecture. I just don't know what it can be used for other than converting it into retail or entertainment.

 
at 9:57 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Seriously, he's asking for more money to keep Cincinnati's version of the Titanic afloat? At least The Banks isn't running a deficit. I respect everything the Freedom Center stands for but get real, our City Council gave us exactly what we didn't need- an economic nightmare. We might as well give the Freedom Center to Mike Brown, he's used to running a loser operation while still setting new attendance records!

 
at 10:00 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tear the thing down and get with the banks project. Do you want me to come down there and run the city. I know I can get results. City council has been sitting on there ass for years. Get your city together before every moves to the other side.

 
at 10:16 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous 7th and Vine said...

The freedom center is another reason why cincinnati competes with other metro areas it sets us apart from the rest because the freedom center is the best, it made like negative 2 million last year, all you people need to get with the program and celebrate great city planning. Building a museum on the one of the best pieces of real estate in the city was the best thing we could of done, we are MAXIMIZING Dollars. Haters.

 
at 10:17 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

You can't tell me that the folks that designed and built the Freedom Center didn't anticipate the EVENTUAL development of the riverfront. It's their own fault. It's not like people are not coming to see the Freedom Center now because of where the entrance is located. If the idea is that changing the location of entrance will make the Freedom Center more accessible, then I am embarassed for the person that pitched that idea and is now asking for money. First, money for the DONATED land, now money to move the front door. What a load.

 
at 10:20 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

When I saw the Plans for the building I said "Ugly, and cheap." When I saw the location I was totally puzzled, "Freeway, business district and sports area". When I read what the Museum was about I said," that's not a museum, that's a wing of an American history museum and a conference center for liberals to whine about how bad the world still is (expecially America) at the taxpayer's expense. This is what Ron Paul talked about and everyone laughs at him. If the government had less ability to tax people they would have less ability to run your life and plan your city. This land should have been sold back to the original owners(the ones the Browns and lindners had the city and county steal for them and thier stadiums) and today we would have booming business's because individuals would quickly and with thier own money put things there that people want and need, not what some academic or phd pinhead THINKS is what people need. (And makes them pay up front for it). Can you beleive I can think so clearly? I can't. I'm Not a city Planner, Politician, Activist, Doctor of letters or wise sage who used to run a large corporation! No just a working shmo who know the real world because i live in it and wrongfully pay for it too.
OH! I have a great Idea! Build section 8 housing in the banks area. Let's showcase what the rest of cincinnati is becoming instead of hiding it in the now ruined neighborhoods of Price Hill Westwood Northside roselawn, carthage, NCH, ETC.... ETC...

 
at 10:21 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

In reading these comments, one can only laugh at the inordinate amount of time individuals spend being vehemently upset at an institution that educates thousands of students in our city about the bigotry that lies at the heart of this discourse.

The previous comments clearly demonstrate to me that it is a sad state of affairs about the progressiveness of this city. Or lack there of.

The crux of this debate lays in the unchecked ignorance of many this city.

Obviously, Cincinnati's children receiving a holistic education is too high of an ideal for some in this city.

 
at 10:23 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's like your unemployed brother-in-law:

"Hey man, can you spot me some cash. This is the last time, I promise. I'll be back on my feet and I'll never ask again."

Noble ideas and practical application are sometimes never meant to be. When forced, the result is a waste of money like The Freedom Center - a monument to nonsense, appropriately located in the planning disaster called "The Banks".

 
at 10:33 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

How to get people through the doors:

Leave the Freedom Center as it is with the exception of putting dinning tables everywhere, a new kitchen, and a sign that reads "Spaghetti Factory" outside.

 
at 10:40 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Those greedy leeches. Cincinnati should kick the current tennants out of the Freeloader Center and open up a giant Starbucks.

 
at 10:43 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

The location of the Freedom Center was very intentional because thousands of runaway slaves crossed the Ohio River into Cincinnati. It also sits on "Little Africa", a Free Black Community in the early 1800's.

I know you didn't know that...LOL. It would require you to learn something new..LOL

 
at 10:52 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keep the doors where they are now, look across the river thru these doors, and watch (and learn) how commerce is done. We should then move City Hall down to the Banks so our Council can look across the river and see what progress looks like. God Bless America. God Bless America's melting pot. God Bless the perils that ALL our ancestors had to face to give us a better life. Finally, take this better life and do something positive with it.

PS. HAPPY VALENTINES DAY

 
at 10:55 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Once you've been to the "Center" you don't need to go again. It's such a waste of my tax dollars. And now they want more money? NO!
What can we as citizens do to stop this total waste of taxpayer dollars? We need to do something.
The Freedom Center needs to be moved someplace else, where it is closer to other places of interest, not the ball parks, etc. Whoever put it there needs to be horse whipped for being so stupid.

 
at 10:57 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Taxpayers in Slavery said...

Now that Bob Mecklenborg has figured out how to introduce legislation, why don't he do something useful and stop this outrageous demand. $1.4 million for another door? Pay for your own door!

 
at 10:58 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Eric said...

Changing the location of the front door of this unnecessary, politically correct answer to the 2001 riots is simply re-arranging the chairs on the deck of the Titanic. Let it sink and let's put something useful there.

 
at 11:00 AM, February 14, 2008 Blogger Hades said...

First of all the so-called freedom center's mission, as several of the comments imply, really isn't what the center's program is about. It's something to do with with blacks, a kind of propaganda center for one particular racial and ethnic group. I guess the museum is supposed to be a morale booster for them. It indicates how someone, John Pepper, may have been successful in business, but not have the brains nor education to deal with broader issues. The center represents a failure in simple marketing research--the dozen or so comparable so-called freedom centers around the country are also in bad shape financially, with low attendance. Rather than let the voters decide what they want to pay for, the Hamilton County commissioners contrive to pay for the Freedom Center with tax payer funding. Even this liberal thanks Brinkman for opposing any public funding for the organization. Ultimately the center undermines voter confidence in the political system, for voter wishes are ignored by politicians such as David Pepper, who advances his personal agenda at the literal expense of voters.

 
at 11:24 AM, February 14, 2008 Blogger Verneida Britton said...

One day Cincinnati will change and the Freedom Center is the catalyst for that change. I strongly support the improvements. The Freedom Center has the right to tax dollars just like the other local museums. 1,000s come through the door each week who believe in diversity & freedom. I like being in that crowd.

 
at 11:25 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

I actually agree with the CEO of the Freedom Center as the Banks project is NOT going to happen.
This city wants to be like NYC so much but we don't have the same type of people to make that happen.
We are a very conservative town with a really big liberal dream. The Freedom Center is an essential element in our community that needs financial backing. We have invested so much in the Reds and Bengals...what about non-sport related recreation that is also educational?

 
at 11:32 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would have to say that I would be very supportive of the change in location for the door. I myself have walked passed the Freedom Center many, many times and only ever went in 1 time..and it wasnt even for the exhibits...it was for a show that was going on there. If you were walking past a strip of clothing stores, etc...u probably wouldnt go in if the door was on the opposite side and you couldnt see in to see what they have to offer...I think that the money should be given for this renovation, because the banks project is not underway yet, and wont be for some time yet...

 
at 11:55 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ironic now that we, the citizens of Cincinnati are becoming "slaves" to the Freedom Centers requests. If I object, as a white person, I'm called racist. Another irony of the Freedom Center...on their potentially biggest day of attendence, Martin Luther King dat they offer free admission! For heaven's sake, why wouldn't you at least charge something? What a sad expensive joke. Who is getting rich with this mess that we don't know about?

 
at 11:57 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

As far as changing the entrance, ridiculous! The Freedom Center is NOT a store where one walks by and on impulse goes in. It's a planned trip and moving the front door 180 degrees is not going to get more people to go.

 
at 11:57 AM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey genius at 11:25.....

The Red's and Bengal's actualy bring people to the region and make money. They produce revenue for other business...restaurant's, hotels, shops.

The Freedom Center is a "nice" concept. It would be OK on a much smaller scale in a different part of the city. Cincinnati could never support it. They will continue to ask for more money every year so they can pay the people who "work" there. I think the place would be OK in Washington D.C or New York, not Cincinnati. And not because we are small minded or un-caring.

And I don't want my kids to have to go on field trips that I'd be paying for so they can be told how awful they are for being white.

 
at 12:00 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

City/County "Accomplishments":
The Banks ... check
Light Rail ... check
Freedom Center ... check
Losing businesses to KY ... check
Stadium mismanagement ... check

Keep up the good work, SW Ohio!

 
at 12:00 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

We should fund 3 more entrances for the Freedom Center, then attendance will increase 3 fold.

 
at 12:03 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hades-

Get your facts straight. Pepper has recused himself from voting on the issue for years, both on Council and the Commission. So he never votes on it.

 
at 12:21 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Verneida Britton said...
"One day Cincinnati will change and the Freedom Center is the catalyst for that change. I strongly support the improvements. The Freedom Center has the right to tax dollars just like the other local museums. 1,000s come through the door each week who believe in diversity & freedom. I like being in that crowd."

Yea, what's wrong with you folks. Don't you know that the Slave Center has the RIGHT to your tax dollars, just like Vernetta said.

 
at 12:31 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Freedom Center needs to be honest about what they are asking and not cast continuous blame elsewhere. They screwed up. They assumed the Banks would be complete soon but need to tell us why we should pay for their bad planning. They hired a person to raise money that didn't do the job, leaving them way behind. Again, that's their bad decision, not ours and there's no explanation as to why we should pay.

They've been in the press a lot lately and although Murphy asserted that the Freedom Center has made its case for its existence, he didn't bother to reiterate that. He needs to. He needs to remind us why they should exist, what they do for the community, and why we should fund it.

As for the entrance, that's such an obvious ploy. Ask for $3M. Include an item you don't really need that's really expensive. Give the politicians something to cut so they can say they are tough on the Center but the Center still gets the $1.6M they wanted in the first place. The new entrance is so unnecessary.

Think about it this way: If I need more money, I need a better job. To get that job does it make more sense to spend borrowed money on a nose job to make me more attractive or a college degree to make me more useful? The Freedom Center needs to focus on substance.

 
at 12:43 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

That giant sucking sound is your tax dollars....wasted!

 
at 12:54 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's turn it into something these people can use: A jail.

 
at 1:19 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Don said...

One 4 x 8 sheet of plywood.

One can of spray paint.

Someone to write "Entrance in Back"

$30 INSTEAD OF $1.4M

PRICELESS!!

 
at 1:26 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Again we the taxpayers and hard working people of Hamilton County and Cincinnati who support everything that goes on with our tax dollars are being fleeced. The Freedom center when built and approved by the taxpayers was supposed to be self-sufficient. This is now the third or fourth time the Freedom Center has come back to taxpayers asking for money. If we look at museums in this area that are not constantly asking for money (IE: Creation, Arts, Taft, etc) They live to their budgets why can't the Freedom Center? It is bad enouhg we have taxation without representation in Cincinnati, Hamilton County, State of Ohio, and Federal Government, when are we as taxpayers going to say enough and take back what is ours. Wake up everyone.

 
at 1:57 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the Banks was there they would get very little increase in visitor's. They talk like it is a Starbucks "not enought foot traffic!" Banks resident says" Let's see... today I need loaf of bread, some batteries, a new shirt and ...oh yeah my 500th visit to the freedom Center at $12 a pop". Sports fan says, " Is there a bar in there? $12 cover charge are you crazy!?!" Out of town vistor says, " what the heII am I doing vacationing in Cincinnati?". Stop thinking cincy is cosmopolitan and a world destination. It is a regional hub for OKI and that is just great and could be if the "Leaders" would just realize the market. If you want New York, move there, If you want Nice midwest town that most people like to change slowly live here. Everyone doesn't have to be your idea of "Progressive". Many people don't fear change as narrow minded liberals say. They don't want or need it and this constant cramming of the throats only gets people angry.

 
at 1:57 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

If the Banks was there they would get very little increase in visitor's. They talk like it is a Starbucks "not enought foot traffic!" Banks resident says" Let's see... today I need loaf of bread, some batteries, a new shirt and ...oh yeah my 500th visit to the freedom Center at $12 a pop". Sports fan says, " Is there a bar in there? $12 cover charge are you crazy!?!" Out of town vistor says, " what the heII am I doing vacationing in Cincinnati?". Stop thinking cincy is cosmopolitan and a world destination. It is a regional hub for OKI and that is just great and could be if the "Leaders" would just realize the market. If you want New York, move there, If you want Nice midwest town that most people like to change slowly live here. Everyone doesn't have to be your idea of "Progressive". Many people don't fear change as narrow minded liberals say. They don't want or need it and this constant cramming of the throats only gets people angry.

 
at 2:15 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

The true 'heart' of Cincinnati always comes out in these comments....

 
at 2:37 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Obviously, the opponents of the Freedom Center are either staunchly racist and bigoted or drunk at 2:35 pm on a Thursday. For Cincinnati's sake, I hope its the latter.

 
at 2:45 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

If you visit the Freedom Center on purpose, you would know that your kids are not made to feel bad because they are white. It is a place of hope in this culturally prehistoric place called Cincinnati.

As i stated before, you are afraid of the challenge that you might intentionally learn something new...LOL

 
at 2:54 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why would anyone want/care to visit this white hate museum anyway? I'm drunk at 2:52 thankyou. Make it a casino/strip club and see the dollars roll in.

 
at 3:01 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let's put it in over the rhine and see how long before it's covered in spray paint and all the windows are broken. The slave pen will stolen too!!

 
at 3:02 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

How great would this country be today if we hadn't brought any slaves over 400 years ago?? WIN/WIN BABY!!!

 
at 3:32 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Vincent said...

(continued from previous comments...)
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Finally, let's state the obvious arguments against this mindless request for tax money:
1. If you are a museum, you are not going to get business from "window-shoppers". Some bloke is not going to be strolling down the sidewalk and go, "Gee, I think that looks like a museum I'd like to spend 4 or 5 hours in, learning about history". Museums are an event (ex. Natural History Museum, Newport Aquarium, Art Museum, Music Hall, Playhouse in the Park, Reds Game, Bengals Game, Kings Island, etc.). These are things people plan to go to in advance, not when they happen to walk by. So, it doesn't matter whether your main door is in the front, back, side, basement, garage, second floor, etc. People are planning to come, and you just need signs to tell them where the main entrance is. (Not everyone is going to come up to the building from the same direction anyway.)
2. You should not need to spend 3.75 million in renovations on a building this young. Tight-wad taxpayers (and regular old money-conscience taxpayers for that matter) can see right through the real intent of this scam.
3. Don't blame the banks for your lack of income/revenue. If people aren't buying your product, either it's awful (not really true in this case) or it needs some improvements (yes - smaller building, different location, self-sustaining so you have public support). Additionally, a museum is not something people hanging out or partying at the Banks are going to walk by and go in (see #1).
4. Curiously enough, FC is frustrated that the Banks is well behind schedule (take a number fellas), and blames them for lack of business, and the reason they have to move their main door. However, not too long ago they threw a huge wrench into the works when they wanted to force the city to pay for the small piece of land for the Banks (that was given to them originally). Sounds a little hypocritical and self-serving, doesn't it?
5. The main reason people didn't throw an absolute fit (much like we are now) when the request to build the FC was first proposed, was because it was going to be self-sustaining. (i.e. no taxpayer money). Most savvy businessmen (and the average public) knew this "business" would probably fail miserably, but hey, if you want to sink money into the titanic, I'm not going to beat your head on the wall trying to stop you.

Instead of asking for taxes to flush into a failing product, maybe the Freedom Center should work a deal with the Banks developers to sell the building. Then they can use that money to pay off some of their debt, and buy property elsewhere to put up a smaller, more efficient, Freedom Center that won't incite so much negative feelings from nearly everyone in the city.

Then again, I'm just your average, college educated guy, using some common sense to fix a problem...

 
at 3:33 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is NOT a museum. It's a small and very expensive story about a period in the U.S. when black slaves were sold in America, originally by entrepreneurial black Africans, and what it took to free them. Was it inhumane? Yes. Most people alive today learned about this from basic American history BUT they don't feel responsible. Why? Because people living today are not responsible for what others did more than 100 years ago. We are not confronted daily with what Adolph Hitler did to the Jewish race living in Germany. Why? Because the Jewish people in America CHOOSE to quietly honor their lost loved ones without forcing the horror of that period of history down the throats of ANY AND ALL WHO WILL LISTEN. We are no longer listening to the unending rants. We have done all we can do to help them to assimilate into American society. It appears that they don't want to so let the blacks living in America quietly support their "museum" through donations and entrance fees. America has done enough. Period.

 
at 3:45 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Can I have 1.4 million dollars for my place? We could use a new front door...

 
at 4:01 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey anon 2:15,

Our true hearts are showing. We as taxpayuers do not want to waste tax money. The white guilt center was pushed thru by Chabot and Portman and these two have answering to do. And for those who want to educate the children, make it a Freedom Center for all the ancestries that came to America and Cincinnati for the freedom.

 
at 4:06 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Vincent said...

When I first began reading the article, I completely thought this was someone's satirical essay. (For those of you who unintelligently support the Freedom Center: satire = irony, sarcasm, or caustic wit used to attack or expose folly, vice, or stupidity.) As I read on, I came to realize that this was not satire, but rather an actual request by the Freedom Center.

Let me start by saying the concept and education the Freedom Center is attempting to provide is a good one. The lessons are important to learn. Personally, I'd hesitate to create an entire museum out of it, but there are niches for everything (exs. Antique Car Museums, WWI & WWII Museums, Reds Hall of Fame Museum, etc.) Regardless, let me state the obvious that few people have the intestinal fortitude to say: the Freedom Center was the "Politically Correct" response by some administrators or legislators to "heal the wounds" caused by the April 2001 riots. I'm not going to analyze that ridiculous thought process, but you'd be lying if you tried to tell me that wasn't the original intent or driving force to create this museum.

Additionally, the Freedom Center people said "let us have a big chunk of the most valuable open piece of land in Cincinnati, and we will educate your children, be self-sufficient, and never take your tax money". The last 2 parts kept the "majority" from rioting themselves, so everyone accepted this "peace offering".

Now, the FC is in debt, and will continue to be there since the price to operate and maintain it costs more than the revenue it earns (the definition of a failing business by most everyone's standards). Therefore, FC continues to ask for tax dollars.

Then, its greedy little administrators have the gall to request the city pay for the small piece of land that the city gave to them (free of charge) in the first place (requesting they develop it into a park, which FC never did). Now, they are asking for 3.75 million in what amounts to "renovations" (to a building still in its infancy); 1.4 million of which goes to relocate their main door. If I found out it was going to cost me 1.4 million to move the main door to my house, I'd just pay $100 bucks to put up a really fancy sign that says "enter at rear door". (Then again I'm just your average, college-educated guy.)

Finally, let's state the obvious arguments against this mindless request for tax money:
1. If you are a museum, you are not going to get business from "window-shoppers". Some bloke is not going to be strolling down the sidewalk and go, "Gee, I think that looks like a museum I'd like to spend 4 or 5 hours in, learning about history". Museums are an event (ex. Natural History Museum, Newport Aquarium, Art Museum, Music Hall, Playhouse in the Park, Reds Game, Bengals Game, Kings Island, etc.). These are things people plan to go to in advance, not when they happen to walk by. So, it doesn't matter whether your main door is in the front, back, side, basement, garage, second floor, etc. People are planning to come, and you just need signs to tell them where the main entrance is. (Not everyone is going to come up to the building from the same direction anyway.)
2. You should not need to spend 3.75 million in renovations on a building this young. Tight-wad taxpayers (and regular old money-conscience taxpayers for that matter) can see right through the real intent of this scam.
3. Don't blame the banks for your lack of income/revenue. If people aren't buying your product, either it's awful (not really true in this case) or it needs some improvements (yes - smaller building, different location, self-sustaining so you have public support). Additionally, a museum is not something people hanging out or partying at the Banks are going to walk by and go in (see #1).
4. Curiously enough, FC is frustrated that the Banks is well behind schedule (take a number fellas), and blames them for lack of business, and the reason they have to move their main door. However, not too long ago they threw a huge wrench into the works when they wanted to force the city to pay for the small piece of land for the Banks (that was given to them originally). Sounds a little hypocritical and self-serving, doesn't it?
5. The main reason people didn't throw an absolute fit (much like we are now) when the request to build the FC was first proposed, was because it was going to be self-sustaining. (i.e. no taxpayer money). Most savvy businessmen (and the average public) knew this "business" would probably fail miserably, but hey, if you want to sink money into the titanic, I'm not going to beat your head on the wall trying to stop you.

Instead of asking for taxes to flush into a failing product, maybe the Freedom Center should work a deal with the Banks developers to sell the building. Then they can use that money to pay off some of their debt, and buy property elsewhere to put up a smaller, more efficient, Freedom Center that won't incite so much negative feelings from nearly everyone in the city.

Then again, I'm just your average, college educated guy, using some common sense to fix a problem...

 
at 4:27 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Vincent said...

When I first began reading the article, I completely thought this was someone's satirical essay. (For those of you who unintelligently support the Freedom Center: satire = irony, sarcasm, or caustic wit used to attack or expose folly, vice, or stupidity.) As I read on, I came to realize that this was not satire, but rather an actual request by the Freedom Center.

Let me start by saying the concept and education the Freedom Center is attempting to provide is a good one. The lessons are important to learn. Personally, I'd hesitate to create an entire museum out of it, but there are niches for everything (exs. Antique Car Museums, WWI & WWII Museums, Reds Hall of Fame Museum, etc.) Regardless, let me state the obvious that few people have the intestinal fortitude to say: the Freedom Center was the "Politically Correct" response by some administrators or legislators to "heal the wounds" caused by the April 2001 riots. I'm not going to analyze that ridiculous thought process, but you'd be lying if you tried to tell me that wasn't the original intent or driving force to create this museum.

Additionally, the Freedom Center people said "let us have a big chunk of the most valuable open piece of land in Cincinnati, and we will educate your children, be self-sufficient, and never take your tax money". The last 2 parts kept the "majority" from rioting themselves, so everyone accepted this "peace offering".

Now, the FC is in debt, and will continue to be there since the price to operate and maintain it costs more than the revenue it earns (the definition of a failing business by most everyone's standards). Therefore, FC continues to ask for tax dollars.

Then, its greedy little administrators have the gall to request the city pay for the small piece of land that the city gave to them (free of charge) in the first place (requesting they develop it into a park, which FC never did). Now, they are asking for 3.75 million in what amounts to "renovations" (to a building still in its infancy); 1.4 million of which goes to relocate their main door. If I found out it was going to cost me 1.4 million to move the main door to my house, I'd just pay $100 bucks to put up a really fancy sign that says "enter at rear door". (Then again I'm just your average, college-educated guy.)

 
at 4:28 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Vincent said...

(continued from previous comments...)
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Finally, let's state the obvious arguments against this mindless request for tax money:
1. If you are a museum, you are not going to get business from "window-shoppers". Some bloke is not going to be strolling down the sidewalk and go, "Gee, I think that looks like a museum I'd like to spend 4 or 5 hours in, learning about history". Museums are an event (ex. Natural History Museum, Newport Aquarium, Art Museum, Music Hall, Playhouse in the Park, Reds Game, Bengals Game, Kings Island, etc.). These are things people plan to go to in advance, not when they happen to walk by. So, it doesn't matter whether your main door is in the front, back, side, basement, garage, second floor, etc. People are planning to come, and you just need signs to tell them where the main entrance is. (Not everyone is going to come up to the building from the same direction anyway.)
2. You should not need to spend 3.75 million in renovations on a building this young. Tight-wad taxpayers (and regular old money-conscience taxpayers for that matter) can see right through the real intent of this scam.
3. Don't blame the banks for your lack of income/revenue. If people aren't buying your product, either it's awful (not really true in this case) or it needs some improvements (yes - smaller building, different location, self-sustaining so you have public support). Additionally, a museum is not something people hanging out or partying at the Banks are going to walk by and go in (see #1).
4. Curiously enough, FC is frustrated that the Banks is well behind schedule (take a number fellas), and blames them for lack of business, and the reason they have to move their main door. However, not too long ago they threw a huge wrench into the works when they wanted to force the city to pay for the small piece of land for the Banks (that was given to them originally). Sounds a little hypocritical and self-serving, doesn't it?
5. The main reason people didn't throw an absolute fit (much like we are now) when the request to build the FC was first proposed, was because it was going to be self-sustaining. (i.e. no taxpayer money). Most savvy businessmen (and the average public) knew this "business" would probably fail miserably, but hey, if you want to sink money into the titanic, I'm not going to beat your head on the wall trying to stop you.

Instead of asking for taxes to flush into a failing product, maybe the Freedom Center should work a deal with the Banks developers to sell the building. Then they can use that money to pay off some of their debt, and buy property elsewhere to put up a smaller, more efficient, Freedom Center that won't incite so much negative feelings from nearly everyone in the city.

Then again, I'm just your average, college educated guy, using some common sense to fix a problem...

 
at 5:09 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thought this was a nonprofit,self-supporting organization? What happened?

 
at 5:14 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hey! Let's build some streetcars and put up some cameras at traffic lights and give people tickets!!!!!!

 
at 5:56 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Based on the previous statements, this whole blacklash is led by a group of white supermacists (all of them dont wear hoods or bald heads, some wear business suites as well). This is not about taxes. We all know what this is about. Maintenance of the status quo.

Wonder why Cincinnati is losing? This great city is losing because a large segment of the white adult male population is filled with hate. Unbashed hate.

Larger question: Due to the high volume of posted messages today, I wonder "Do these people have jobs?!!??" Cause a lot of work was not completed today if they did. LOL

Proponents of the Freedom Center should realize that they can never change the ethos of hate and even self-hatred in some.

What's interesting that the Freedom Center provides a space in a face to face format to have this community discourse. Why would you come into that setting? That would mean you would have to take off your klan hood when you enter building. (if you had good manners)

 
at 6:21 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

The problem with the Slave Center is they didn't get the memo. Slavery was an alternative to genocide, not an alternative to a banana daquiri and an afternoon in the hammock.

When slaves were sold from Africa, it was a result of tribal warfare where prisoners were taken and brought to mostly Dutch sslave traders. The idea that white people went to Africa to round up these people is just a fairy tale.

Today, the same jungle warfare continues, but there is no market for the slaves so they just kill them.

Americans with black African ancestors should be thanking God their ancestors were sold into slavery. And, then thanking the USA that they were freed instead of sent back.

We need a museum to educate our population as to what really happened.

 
at 6:44 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Misinformation is almost laughable. What sources did you use to get your information? Please provide to the public for further reading. This should be interesting...

 
at 7:47 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The Great Land Debacle" (imaginary discourse - January 2008)

Tax Payer: So let me get this straight. You want me to pay you 1 million dollars for the land I freely donated to you along the Ohio river?

Freedom Center: Yep.

Tax Payer: But I gave it to you for free! And you never even used it!

Freedom Center: Thats what makes this is so awkward.

Tax Payer: It just doesnt seem fair that you can charge me twice!

Freedom Center: What are you, a racist?

Tax Payer: What?!!!


"The Great New Front Door Debacle" (imaginary discourse - February 2008)

Tax Payer: Gee Freedom Center, thanks for giving us our land back.

Freedom Center: Jolly good show old bean. But now we need a new front door, and its gonna run at least 1.4 million!

Tax Payer: But your old front door is only four years old!

Freedom Center: Thats what makes this so awkward.

Tax Payer: It just doesnt seem fair that you can charge me twice!

Freedom Center: What are you, a racist?

Tax Payer: What?!!!

 
at 8:13 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Anonymous @ 5:56pm:

Ahem, I cannot walk in Over-The-Rhine by myself as I would likely be verbally, if not physically, assaulted due to the fact that I am a white male. THAT is unabashed hate.

I find it interesting that hate and racism are ALWAYS attributed to white America. In fact, racism has taken such a U-Turn now that whites are CONSTANTLY on the defensive. I like to think I am not racist, I don't condone racism and would never have a negative thought based on skin color - BUT, when I am hated because I am white, I am forced into a situation where I have to stand up for who I am.

 
at 8:17 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Cincinnati Enquirer - January 2008

Governor Strickland: CUT 2,700 JOBS, CLOSE 2 HOSPITALS

And let the folks losing their jobs know that we will spend $1.4 million for a new front door on a four year old museum down in Cincinnati. They should have plenty of time to visit the Freedom Center, and they can wait at the new front door with all of those losing their jobs in the private sector as well!

 
at 8:41 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Don't get it. Won't get it. Don't want to get it. I see it, I want it, so give it to me or I'll cause a problem. As if we haven't seen THAT!
STUPIDITY IS TERMINAL!!!!!!!!!!!

 
at 10:28 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Some of the comments above indicate that WHITE hearts need to be changed.
(1) stop the crime
(2) marry
(3) respect education
(4) be a patriot
and WHITE hearts will change

 
at 11:52 PM, February 14, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe people in this area are sick & tired of being put on the hook for this Freedom Center, just like the stadiums & other money sucking ventures.

So, there's the back door. Tough stuff. Live with it! If you're that unhappy, fold up the show & the County can use it as a jail.

I'm not going to be held hostage or a slave for one confounded penny for this museum. I've never visited the place & it isn't on my calendar in the future.

Anon 6:21 is absolutely correct in the history of slave trading. The greedy, money hungry chieftains & village bigshots sold live bodies for top currency. It's too bad there are those who can get this history factoid thru their gormless skulls. However, it's so much easier to blame whitey.

For those in doubt, just Google it & you'll see these honest truths in full form.

Shut this dump down if they don't stop whining & threatening about the darned back door. Turn into a jail or a casino.

If there's $1.4 million up for grabs, I'd like a modest chunk of that for a home makeover, pay some bills, go on vaca, maybe get another set of wheels...

 
at 1:19 AM, February 15, 2008 Blogger RAY said...

The FREEDOM CENTER was to be a private, for profit institution from its inception.
Then the requests for public money were initiated and continue with the latest request for another $1,400,000 from taxpayers.
I suggest the FREEDOM CENTER directors could purchase the new entrance and pay for future expenditures by charging a fee for viewing the exhibit, instead of allowing tens of thousands of potential cash paying customers to enter its doors without paying any fees whatsoever!
Another money saving thought is for the operation of the FREEDOM CENTER to be administered by volunteers, thus releaving the highly compensated officials from their ridiculous salaries.
IT's give, give, give by the taxpayers and take, take, take by the leeches!

 
at 9:02 AM, February 15, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

To the wise and common sense people who oppose the additional funding of the "Free"dom center: Stop writing in this blog.

The people who run the center will just print it out and call us all "racisits" even though they have zero evidence as such. All liberals know that the mere accusation of racism is enough to make all white people quake in their boots.

Request: APPROVED.

 
at 9:29 AM, February 15, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

No one has yet provided information sources (Books and Articles) on this recent development in the history of the slave trade. Dont tell me about google because any uneducated moron can create a web page.

 
at 9:40 AM, February 15, 2008 Blogger Myron said...

It is truly amazing to me that a city that is so proud of it's rich and vast history and everything that is Cincinnati; and also a City whose arts associations have been funded so well, can not seem to get behind the Freedom Center. It's placement marks a historical account of the place where many slaves recieved their freedom. The Freedom Center has it's challenges, but so does this city and as much as the Center needs dollars, I'm sure that community support would mean even more. Some things are more important than money!

 
at 11:10 AM, February 15, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to the racism comment, there's an old addage about those who protest too loudly when guilty as charged.

 
at 11:23 AM, February 15, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Power + White Privilege= Racism. Please read some books.

 
at 1:14 PM, February 15, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

This brings back the lyrics of an old punk rock song by a band called Minor Threat. Rings true.

I'm sorry
For something I didn't do
Lynched somebody
But I don't know who
You blame me for slavery
A hundred years before I was born

GUILTY OF BEING WHITE

I'm a convict
(guilty)Of a racist crime
(guilty)I've only served
(guilty)19 years of my time

GUILTY OF BEING WHITE

 
at 2:33 PM, February 15, 2008 Anonymous Vincent said...

Anon 2:14 @ 7:47pm - I just had to write and comment on what a witty and entertaining post that was. The dialogue is a great summary of what is going on right now. All the blind fools who insist that "everyone who is against paying 3.75 million of our taxes for this project must be racist" should read your post. Excellent stuff!

 
at 2:49 PM, February 15, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

To follow up Anon 1:14 comments about the song...

Did it ever occur to anyone out there accusing all white people of being racists (because we're tired of paying taxes for a supposed "self-sufficient" building/business), and accusing our ancestors of being racist slave traders... maybe our ancestors didn't own slaves nor hate black people...? I know that's a shock... take a minute to think about it... check out some ideas below to help you through it.

There were 2 sides in the Civil War: North"/Union and "South"/Confederate. Were all white people living in America today born from slave traders from the South? Oh, yeah, did none of us immigrate from other countries since the late 1800's?

Naaaaahhhh... according to the true racists, all white people were previous slave traders.

 
at 3:42 PM, February 15, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

To Anon 2/15/08 9:29AM

Here ya go, hotshot. And I'd hardly call Stanford University an uneducated moron creating a webpage. This is an extensive compendium of sources, bibliographies & historical data.

http://library.stanford.edu/africa/history/hislavery.html

Such a pity you cannot & will not accept the documented facts that the greed of village leaders & tribal chieftains led them to sell bodies into slavery. Anon, educate yourself. The White faces are so over being unjustly accused of everything & anything.

 
at 5:37 PM, February 15, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

And another thing, Barack Obama (whom I am voting for - I mean seriously, how racist am I???), is an educated, well spoken African American. Yet, in his initial campaign phases, there were fears that he would not garner votes because he is "not black enough."

Fortunately, this has not been the case. However, please explain how it is possible to not be "black enough."

I am puzzled how an African American can be considered "not black enough" because he is educated and well-spoken. I assure you, he was not raised with a silver spoon in his mouth - the same one that apparently ALL of us white males luckily found in our mouths as a baby.

 
at 9:49 AM, February 18, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Instead of buying the FC a door, show them the door! This money pit is a joke foisted on the same people who pay for all the other free giveaways.
A museum is a business and should be self-supporting. If you can't attract interested customers, your content and format are not conducive to your future success.
We need a casino to generate cash to get back our investment; move the FC to Union Terminal.

 
at 4:07 PM, April 05, 2008 Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well to be honest, I think they should change the enterance because it's weird how they got it set up. Now if they would stop having these free days and crap, then they can pay for it themselves. Also I think the Museum should of been in a different location then right there on the River. And I agree with most people who talked about the sporting events that goes on downtown. Its hard for people just to get down there on a day that the Reds is playing and the Bengals

 
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